Killington 101 :: Holiday Week Tips and Tricks
Posted by The Beast on December 21, 2016
Snowy mountaintops. Twinkling pines. The holiday spirit is very much at home in Killington, Vermont, and we want you to be, too. Make the most of the mountain during this busy time – and still keep your holiday spirits high with these tips and tricks.
1. Keep in Touch
From snow totals to trail counts to activities to events, there’s a lot to know, but don’t worry - we’ve got you covered. Check the Conditions Report and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat for real time updates.
Review the Trail Guide to get acquainted before leaving the warmth of your home.
Once you’ve arrived, be aware of base lodge televisions scrolling important information including open lifts and trails. Grab Today’s Report printout and a Trail Guide from a guest services location or from a Mountain Ambassador to put in your pocket.
2. Start Smart
The Beast gets its name for a reason: it’s big. All of our base areas will be open this holiday weekend and all base lodge parking lots offer convenient drop-off and pick-up areas, so drop your passengers and gear, then go park the car; your friends (and your back) will thank you.
Snowshed Lodge is home to our adult learning center, Beast Mountain Coaster, Skyeride and a host of other fun family activities. Free and valet parking, indoor ticket sales center, equipment rentals, Killington Sports retail shop, expansive food court, Long Trail Pub, and ice cream Scoop Shop await you. Snowshed offers access to our signature beginner slope and learning area, and connects to all upper mountain terrain via the Snowshed Express Quad.
Traveling with kids? Ramshead Lodge is an ideal starting place offering a childcare center, youth lesson programs and access to upper mountain areas via the Ramshead Express Quad. Here you’ll find convenient free parking, lift tickets, equipment rentals, Killington Sports retail shop and a family friendly food court. Terrain at Ramshead includes our kid-focused learning area with a magic carpet and Easy Street trail. Caper trail, off the Ramshead peak, will bring you to Snowdon and K-1 base areas, or all the way back to Ramshead base area via lower Great Northern trail.
K-1 Lodge is a popular destination for those not needing lessons or for skiers and snowboarders looking for direct access to intermediate and advanced terrain. If you fit this description, take a tip from us – park at Bear Lodge. It is conveniently located off East Mountain Road and offers access to all mountain areas via the Skye Peak Express Quad. K-1 and Bear both offer lift tickets, equipment rentals, Killington Sports retail shops, food courts and bars with live après-ski entertainment, but the crowds will be milder at Bear.
Skyeship Lodge, located on Route 4, offers free parking and direct access to the Skyeship Express Gondola, transporting you to the top of green circle favorite, Great Eastern. If you’re looking for more of a challenge, find Cruise Control, Needle’s Eye, or Superstar when you step off the gondola. Skyeship offers tickets, but no rentals. Grab southwestern style comfort food at the SkyeCafe or try the hot special of the day and a micro brew at the SkyeBar.
If you're renting equipment, consider taking care of your rentals at our newest rental shop located at Killington Sports on the corner of Killington Road and Route 4. This is a great location to get rental equipment on your way to the mountain or the evening before to avoid the morning rush in our on-mountain rental shops. Plus as an added bonus for renting at this location, receive 10% off a retail purchase in the Killington Sports Store.
3. Catch a Ride
“The Bus” runs daily between 7:30 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. up and down the Killington Road and to many lodging accommodations. Leave your car behind, hop on and enjoy the ride to K-1 or Snowshed Base Lodges to start your day off right. Stop by guest services or visit thebus.com for a detailed schedule.
Base Area Transportation Shuttles (BATS) connect the base lodges, parking areas and the Grand Hotel from 7:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. No matter where the trails take you, BATS can get you back.
Many restaurants have evening shuttle service, too, so you don’t have to worry about driving home. Wobbly Barn and Preston’s (800.VIP.BARN), Pickle Barrel and JAX (802.422.RIDE), and Lookout (802.422.LOOK) are some of our favorites.
4. Explore More
Key terrain is typically freshly groomed for early morning corduroy tracks and key lifts open at 8:00 a.m.; so get here early, make your turns, and then check out the area activities. If you’re set on spending all your time on the slopes, get to know our upper-mountain lifts and terrain to avoid base area congestion.
We love the K-1 Gondola, Snowdon Quad, Superstar Quad and Skye Peak Express Quad, but Killington’s lift network is vast for a reason; enjoy more time on the slopes and less time in lift lines by riding the North Ridge Triple, Canyon Quad, Bear Mountain Quad and Needle’s Eye Express Quad. Remember, your Killington pass and lift ticket are also good at Pico Mountain, just seven miles down the road on Route 4.
Whether this is your first visit to Killington Resort or it's been a while since you last visited, consider a free Meet the Mountains tour offered daily beginning December 24 at 10:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. Meet your friendly tour guide in the courtyard at Snowshed Base Lodge and hit the slopes for a 75-90 minute tour of Killington Resort. Appropriate for experienced novice and higher ability levels (blue square terrain may be included).
5. Eat and Be Merry
Eat a big breakfast, grab a snack for your pocket and ski and ride through the mid-day lunch rush. You’ll have more time on the snow and the trails will be far less busy. If you’re dead set on lunch at noon, veer off the beaten path and visit Preston’s at the Grand Hotel, offering comfy slippers in place of your ski and snowboard boots, and Vermont-infused culinary creations (season pass holder discounts apply) or the Clubhouse (across from the Grand Hotel). Check out one of the ski-in, ski-out hideaways, the Ledgewood Yurt (off of Northbrook trail), the Vista Deck (off of Great Eastern trail), or the brand new Jerk Jamaican Mountain Grill (at Skyeship Express Gondola midstation.) Of course, all of our lodges will be serving up delicious lunches too, but just be prepared to share your meal break with many other skiers and riders. If base lodge dining is your jam, you may have a better chance at avoiding the crowds at Skyeship.
6. Be Adventurous
The week is stacked with activities on-snow and off, including, an ice cream social, live music and more. Catch the Vermont Institute of Science Raptor Encounter exhibit at the Grand Hotel on Dec. 26th, Family Trivia Night at the Long Trail Pub on Dec. 27th, and the Matchstick Productions screening of “Ruin and Rose” on Dec. 28th. Check the events calendar for more information, plan accordingly, and don’t miss out.
Searching for a more thrilling adventure? Take a ride on the Beast Mountain Coaster or Skyeride, or a scenic K-1 Express Gondola ride to 4,241’ and tempt your palate at the Peak Lodge Restaurant. The lift-serviced Tubing Park will be making its season debut this holiday week (located at the Clubhouse, across from the Grand Hotel). Snow-cat drawn sleigh rides, fat biking and guided snowshoe tours offer yet another exciting way to explore the Resort.
Get your winter gear shopping done at Killington Sports Route 4; here you’ll find the biggest selection of Killington logo wear and all the name brands under one roof. Did you forget your extra pair of gloves at home? No problem! Killington Sports has everything you need to fully enjoy a day on the hill.
7. Savor the evenings
Many restaurants along the road offer take-out service, which means dinner in sweatpants, please and
thank you. Some of favorites are The Clubhouse, Sushi Yoshi, iPie Pizza, The Lookout Tavern, and Domenic’s.
For those going out, hit restaurants like the Wobbly Barn Steakhouse and Preston’s early, then head back to your room and recharge during the prime dinner hours. The night, whether full of sleep or dancing at the Wobbly Barn Nightclub, will be yours for the taking.
Stay busy, and make your vacation memorable.